Yakima Fire Chief Dave Willson to Retire
For most of his adult life, Dave Willson has been at home in a fire house. Just after the first of the year, Willson will move on to another stage of his life when he brings to an end a nearly 40-year career in the fire service.
Willson, who has been Yakima’s fire chief for the last two-and-a-half years, has decided to retire in the first week of January.
“It’s time,” said Willson. “Our kids are grown and my health is good. I have the opportunity to begin another chapter and I’m ready to take advantage of it.”
Willson, who started his firefighting career in 1975, joined the Yakima Fire Department (“YFD”) in January of 1984. He had previously worked in the fire service in both Pierce County and Bellevue.
“The Yakima Fire Department has gone through a lot of positive changes over the last few years,” said Willson. “Key investments have been made to modernize the department and to make it as effective as possible. I’m proud of how far the department has come and I leave it feeling confident that the Yakima Fire Department has a very bright future,” said Willson.
The City of Yakima is currently focusing on identifying an internal candidate to fill the fire chief position once Willson retires.